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PM launches ‘Saubhagya’ plan for household electrification

Bright idea:Narendra Modi launching the scheme to supply electricity to poor households, in New Delhi on Monday.PTI

Bright idea:Narendra Modi launching the scheme to supply electricity to poor households, in New Delhi on Monday.PTI  

The welfare of the poor is linked to the identity of the NDA government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said here on Monday.

He was speaking at the launch of a Rs. 16,000 crore scheme, Saubhagya, under which households across the country that have no access to electricity, will be given power connections free of cost.

Free connections

“Under the PM Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana (Saubhagya), every household in the country, whether it is in a village or a city or in a far-flung area, will be given an electricity connection. No price will be charged for the poor to get an electricity connection, and the government will go to their houses to give them the connection,” Mr Modi said on Monday evening.

The government will bear the expected Rs. 16,000 crore cost of giving electricity connections to the four crore households in the country, which the Prime Minister regretted are yet to get any electricity and haven’t seen a light bulb. “It’s been over 125 years when the famous scientist Thomas Alva Edison invented the bulb and said: ‘We will make electricity so cheap that only the rich will burn candles’,” Mr. Modi stressed, highlighting that it was unfortunate many households were still lit only with candles or lanterns.

‘Dreams of the poor’

“Forget about conveniences; the women of the house have to cook in the dark, which is why most of them are under pressure to try and finish the cooking before the sun sets,” Mr. Modi said after inaugurating Deen Dayal Urja Bhavan, a green building built by the ONGC.

Arguing that few would have imagined a government that would give bank accounts to 30 crore poor people, insure 15 crore people at a cost of 90 paise per day and reduce the price of stents and knee replacements, the Prime Minister said the dreams of the poor were the dreams of his government.

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